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Financial wages have been a talking point across the nation for several years, as both prices and poverty rates increase drastically. There’s a struggle to make end’s meet, but for women in America, that struggle is much harder due to the pay gap between what they make versus their male counterparts. 

The unfortunate fact is that women make 80% of what men make in the same jobs. If women were to be paid the same rate as men, it has been shown that the poverty rate among both married and single women would be cut in half, as would the number of working children who have been thrust into these positions to support their struggling families. The gap in pay isn’t going to be solved in one day, but if we are to get one step closer to financial equality, looking at company policies and trends is the first place to start.

Fortunately, no one is going into solving this issue blind. There are several articles online offering companies a place to start, Forbes being one of them. Their first tip is to issue a company-wide pay audit. This audit would examine any pay disparities between employees completing equal or similar work to one another, and show what a company needs to address to correct them. An annual pay audit would also ensure that the company remains up-to-date as employees come and go. Making sure to stay transparent with your employees about the entire process and pay system is essential to building trust amongst your team.

On the advertising end of the spectrum, avoiding gendered language in employment ads keeps them from sounding biased toward one gender or another. Sticking to more neutral vocabulary is beneficial toward the general hiring process, as well as job training, as it gives everyone an equal ground to start on within the company. Lastly, determining the starting salary for a job position should be based on your industry rather than relying on the salary history of the applicant.

Despite the progress made for women over the years, financial discrepancies continue to exist. Overall, women are paid 82 cents for every dollar men make. Women of color get even less—for example, Latina women earn as low as 54 cents to every dollar earned by non-Hispanic men. So long as attention is diverted away from pay with actions such as non-disclosure policies, there’s a likelihood of the wage gap staying where it is.

There’s still a long way to go before equal pay is prevalent in all workplaces across America, but these issues are harder to ignore today. With continued conversations surrounding this and more companies making tangible efforts to correct it, closing the gender pay gap is not an impossible goal.